Kalamazoo Section of the American Chemical Society

We are a dynamic and visionary organization committed to improving people’s lives in our community through the transforming power of chemistry.  We strive to advance the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of Kalamazoo, Allegan and Van Buren counties.

National Chemistry Week - Chemistry Day at the Museum

Saturday 13 October 2018

This event has already taken place. For a list of upcoming events, see our events page.

Kalamazoo Valley Museum
12:00 - 16:00
museum and KACS logos

KACS 32nd Chemistry Day at the Museum

13 October 2018

museum sign

Though wintry temperatures came rolling in to Kalamazoo, MI, on Saturday, October 13, 2018, 60 volunteers* (15 of them KACS members) - many for 4 hours and others in 2-hour shifts – gathered at the Kalamazoo Valley Museum (KVM) from noon to 4 pm to present 20 activities on two floors and the large theater to 600 patrons. Visitors included extended families, scout leaders, practicing teachers, with many repeat visitors and several who had come as children themselves to one or more of our previous 31 events. An additional attraction during the four-hour afternoon offerings this year was the inclusion by our generous host, the KVM, of 3 free planetarium shows at regular intervals. Volunteers, who were solicited widely from area companies, colleges/university, high schools and other area science-teaching centers, were informed of our emphasis on safety both in terms of our own participation and our interactions with the attendees as they did the activities. Many education-related materials from ACS and other sources were gladly received by our visitors who expressed enthusiasm about the variety of available stations through the afternoon, as well as about learning of the availability of ACS' large assortment of age-appropriate resoures; there seemed to be greater-than-average interest expressed in subsequent use of these resources to continue science learning after the program.

* Volunteers were employees from Pfizer, Perrigo and Kalsec; WMU - faculty, retired staff and students; faculty and students from KVCC; and K College students; some HS chem students (Loy Norrix, Mattawan, Portage Northern) and others from the community (e.g., Air Zoo, KVM volunteers). An e-mail of appreciation was sent to the Museum leadership, and to each volunteer whose e-address was available.

Chromatography butterflies activity

Chromatography butterflies

Erupting volcano activity

Erupting Volcano

More Hands-On Offerings

25 October 2018

Among the large number of offerings presented to children and their families at the Lake Center Elementary (Portage) STEAM night for the third successive year, favorites were hands-on activities by our KACS Western Michigan University Chem club students and several of our members. There was an attendance of ~600 engaged children during the 3-hour event.

Materials Distribution to Other Local Section Venues

Copies of Celebrating Chemistry were distributed to organizations in our Local Section area which provide science outreach to our communities: copies in Spanish were donated to our Kalamazoo Public Library for their Hispanic Heritage Month celebration; copies in both English and Spanish were given to the Air Zoo (which also was a host site for one of our Voyage to Mars Program-In-A-Box presentations) for use in their many student programs through the year; and were distributed to patrons at a very successful STEAM night hands-on Science event at Lake Center Elementary in Portage, MI, on October 25, 2018, where some of our members also engaged the children and families in hands-on activities.

Museum Day banner

We still need a lot of helping hands from our members for this much anticipated event!

We would love to hear that you are interested in volunteering; if you are not sure what you might want to present we have a list of activity suggestions from prior years, or you may want to work alongside someone else as a "helper" at a table. Please join the few who have responded to date and contact our NCW coordinator Lydia Hines - advanced planning makes the event more pleasurable.